Friday Morning Bookclub

February 18, 2011

The Help By Kathryn Stockett: More Controversy!

Filed under: Literary Tidbits,The Help — susanbright @ 6:14 pm

Although Kathryn Stockett’s book The Help was a New York Times Best Seller as well as a  book club favorite, it is not without controversy. First there were those who questioned Stockett’s attempt at capturing the black dialect of the south and now this. Thank you, Audrey for bringing this article to our attention Check it out !

Family maid sues author of best-seller ‘The Help’

Published: Today

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – A black woman who once worked as a maid for a relative of novelist Kathryn Stockett is suing the author of the best-selling book “The Help,” claiming she was the basis for a black servant character who she thought depicted her in a poor light.

The novel is based on relationships between white families and their African-American maids in the segregated South of the 1960s, and a driving character in the book is a woman named Aibileen.

Now, a real-life woman named Ablene Cooper, who said she worked for Stockett’s brother, is claiming Stockett used her name and likeness without permission and with embarrassing results.

The lawsuit was filed Feb. 9 in Hinds County Circuit Court in Jackson, Miss., where Stockett grew up. It asks for $75,000 in damages, an amount chosen to keep the litigation from ending up in federal jurisdiction, where larger actions are often decided.

Cooper referred questions to her attorney when contacted Thursday. Her attorneys did not immediately respond to messages.

Penguin USA publisher Amy Einhorn said she doesn’t think there’s any basis to the lawsuit.

“This is a beautifully written work of fiction and we don’t think there is any basis to the legal claims,” Einhorn said Thursday in an e-mail.

The six-page lawsuit claims, among other things, that Stockett’s refusal to publicly admit that she based the character on Cooper’s likeness “is so outrageous in character, and so extreme as to go beyond all bounds of human decency, and is utterly intolerable in a civilized community.”

It quotes passages from the book, including one in which Aibileen’s character describes a cockroach: “He black. Blacker than me.”

The lawsuit said Cooper found it upsetting and highly offensive to be portrayed as someone “who uses this kind of language and compares her skin color to a cockroach.”

“The Help” tells the story of black maids Aibileen and Minny, who work with a white woman named Skeeter on a book about their experiences as domestic help. The black characters fear retribution for working with the white woman on such a book, but Aibileen decides to help in part because black maids are forced to use outside restrooms.

Cooper’s lawsuit claims it was offensive to be portrayed as someone who must use a segregated toilet.

Stockett told The Associated Press in 2009 that growing up her family had a maid named Demetrie, who used a restroom on the outside of the family’s house. Stockett said Demetrie died in the mid-1980s.

“The Help” debuted in 2009, and there are 2.5 million hardcover copies in print in the U.S., according to the publisher’s website. Scenes for a movie based on the book were shot in Mississippi.

What do you think?  Does Ablene Cooper have a valid case against Katherine Stockett?

If you haven’t read it yet, get The Help now!



  1. New York Law School’s legal reporting blog analyzes the real life help’s lawsuit against the author and whether she has any chance of success:

    Comment by LASIS_BLOG — March 11, 2011 @ 11:39 am | Reply

    • $75K is more than likely a token request. what is really asked for here is an apology and recognition for being disrespectful…using her name and somewhat likeness without asking permission or even making her aware as if she is stupid or invisible and would not notice this. That is insulting and the days of this type of theft should have been over with old “song” writers theft of the fifties and sixtys.

      Comment by 4sher — August 22, 2011 @ 8:01 am | Reply

  2. Thank you! Maid Looking To “Clean Up” in Lawsuit is very interesting! I will be curious to hear the outcome!

    Comment by susanbright — March 11, 2011 @ 7:16 pm | Reply

  3. WOW, People really have no limits to the depths they will sink to leech off of someone who is talented. I think I am going to sue every author who ever used the name Chris, or Christopher or CJ or Christophe or Topher. I mean, come on!! If this actually happens, we will soon be living in a society where no one will ever do anything due to the fear that they will get sued when it becomes successful. Get a life lady and let the talented people alone!

    Comment by C.J. — August 4, 2011 @ 1:57 pm | Reply

    • Hi C.J! Thanks for your comment. I am going to try to do some research and find out what if anything is happening with this case. i think we already live in a world where everyone has to be concerned about being sued.

      Comment by susanbright — August 4, 2011 @ 8:38 pm | Reply

  4. I would be honored if I thought my character inspired Aibileen. Through the novel, she taught me about bravery, the power of prayer, and inspiring change.

    The cockroach comment was nothing more than a mindless, almost stream-of-consciousness section of the paragraph where Aibileen is lost in thought. Maybe let’s look at the whole picture instead of pulling obscure quotes. Aibileen is a hero.

    Comment by April — August 6, 2011 @ 12:20 am | Reply

    • I agreed with April, I would have been flattered to be a part of this book. I could understand if she was seeking some kind of profit from the book if she believed Aibileen character was based on her, but to be offended I just cant understand. I loved Aibileen she was a strong, smart, caring woman that took a big risk in hope to help other’s.

      Comment by Jen — August 22, 2011 @ 10:09 am | Reply

      • I could not agree more with both Jen and April – I haven’t read the book, but I saw the movie, and I was soooo inspired by Aibileen! I, too, would be honored to be compared to her.

        Comment by Claudia Kellogg — August 22, 2011 @ 12:22 pm | Reply

    • Yes — A hero — albeit, an unpaid one. I believe I can emphathize with both sides.

      First, I am a member of a cultural group that has historically been misrepresented in mainstream markets, as well having had legal ownership of our concepts, inventions, etc. illegally “assumed” by others. I can truly understand why Ablene (plaintiff) is so outraged that the author hardly even bothered to disguise her identity behind a less obvious pseudonym (“Aibilene”) – especially if the real maid worked for her family. But secondly
      I am also a writer of both fiction & nonfiction, who is always walking the dangerously swaying tightrope between telling “my truth,” creative license and “infringing” on someone else’s interpretation of “my truth.” It’s a hard road to navigate.
      Dr. HMCW

      Comment by Dr. M.C. Wilson — August 22, 2011 @ 12:56 pm | Reply

  5. CJ, I think there is something more intersting…Abelene worked for the author’s brother…did you forget that fact into your equation of her lawsuit? Where else could the author get facts…if not from the maid(s)?

    Comment by Meresa — August 6, 2011 @ 8:28 am | Reply

  6. Funny how inaccurate the supposed portrayal of her is. One could say, so inaccurate that is most certainly isn’t a character based on her. She’s just trolling for some cash.

    Comment by Jay — August 11, 2011 @ 4:02 pm | Reply

    • JAY….would u consider it “trolling” for cash if someone portrayed your likeness, (positvely or negatively) in a novel or the big screen without compensating you!!?? Let’s be real here..,Ablene vs Aibilene, what a coinkydink!
      Another coincidence is, that the maid in which it is based on is DEAD. Well, did any of her family reap any of the benefits…or are they all dead also?
      And as for Ms Susanbright…it’s odd how she didn’t comment on Dr. M.C. Wilson’s blog (the most knowledgeable insight) so I will…quote..”Thank You Dr. Wilson, beautifully said!
      As for the movie…I loved it. I laughed and cried. It totally depicted how life was back then. We’re past that era so we should be able to handle it. Wonderful movie…very entertaining

      Comment by Kathy — August 23, 2011 @ 2:09 pm | Reply

      • Hi Kathy! Man, this is one tough crowd! As to why I did not comment on Dr. Wilson’s comment… I guess you didn’t notice that I did not comment on anyone’s responses to The Help the last few days. The comments were coming so quickly that I barely had time to read them. Sometime in the next few days I hope to do so, however I see no reason to comment as everyone is doing such a good job keeping the dialogue going. I am looking forward to seeing the movie.

        Comment by susanbright — August 23, 2011 @ 5:09 pm | Reply

        • OMG!!!!!!

          Comment by Kathy Ford — August 29, 2011 @ 11:47 am | Reply

  7. Frankly I’m very sick and tired to seeing these types of film, books, showing how Black people use to clean up white peoples houses and raise there kids..Frankly it should have never happen in history and I really dont want to keep being reminded of this part of American History..

    Comment by Ron — August 15, 2011 @ 2:50 pm | Reply

    • History should always be remembered to ensure it is not repeated. It’s unfortunate and terrrible wrong that some things took place, but again if we aren’t remembering it happened, it’s human nature to repeat it. Let’s all never forget and stand together a stronger people.
      It’s obvious this woman is trying to just get money, if it wasn’t about that, then it would go further in the court system, and she would have spoke out earlier.

      Comment by Kelly — August 22, 2011 @ 12:52 pm | Reply

  8. Welcome Ron! I often feel that way after reading historical fiction books. Hopefully we learn something from reading them.

    Comment by susanbright — August 15, 2011 @ 3:02 pm | Reply

  9. I am African American who grew up in Charlotte, North Carolina. I majored in English in college, and was somewhat surprised by how the author wrote the so called black dialect in this story. The dialect sounded phoney and the spelling was very different than most African Americans writers. A state like Mississippi would have had many uneducated blacks during that time, and like the slaves, they had a tendency to pronounce words as they heard them. However, I think that the author should have consulted a Black Literature Professor when it came to the dialect.
    No one enjoys reading phoney dialect, neither do I want to hear it in a movie. It’s no different than hearing phoney southern accents used by white people.

    Comment by Sandra — August 15, 2011 @ 3:55 pm | Reply

  10. Welcome Sandra. Thank you for your insightful comment. Although I did not pick up on the problems with the dialect, your suggestion of consulting an expert on dialect sounds like it would have been a reasonable thing to do. How do you think they handled the white southern dialect in the book?

    Comment by susanbright — August 15, 2011 @ 9:36 pm | Reply

  11. I agree with Ron.. I was part of the 60s movement to erradicate racism.. I am sick and tired of being embarrased
    and ashamed of a society who found (finds) it acceptable to objectify others. Though I realize it’s not a perfect world and degrees of evil exist and always will.. as a people are we really so base and stupid? I will always find this unbelievable.

    Who cares to read about this disgusting subject? Slaves? Really? Should we take pleasure to read a fiction novel about it? Boycott this book … if you haven’t already you will learn about predjudice and bigotry in school.

    As for the lawsuit… common…. the relationship between the author and Ablene along with the subject matter of the book may be circumstancial… considered “coincidence”… but it’s obvious. If I were on the jury.. which is exactly what this blog may be…. a research project to measure the case… I would award Ablene.. without even reading the book.

    Comment by Brenna — August 16, 2011 @ 11:05 pm | Reply

  12. My husband is from Vicksburg Mississippi, and its a hop,skip,jump from Jackson. they know Ms. Cooper, and yes she did work as a house maid. I hope she gets what she is suing for, She should have been asked to be placed in the book, and not being taken for granted. I am a person of color, and the way they wrote how people talked in the book was uncalled for. It wasn’t like that, but unfortunately you all will believe that it happened like this ( sad for you ) > white folks are good making colored folks look bad and get paid for it!

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 17, 2011 @ 3:58 pm | Reply

    • Hi Stephanie, Thanks for your comment. I wouldn’t neccessrily assume that white folks believe it happened like it did in the book. Many of us reading the book enjoyed it simply as a fictional story and not by any means historical fiction. I think it is good for everyone to hear your thoughts. I hate that this is turning into such a black white issue.

      Comment by susanbright — August 17, 2011 @ 5:24 pm | Reply

    • She was not in the book!

      Comment by Sonia Rumzi — August 18, 2011 @ 5:56 pm | Reply

    • Wow Stephanie, we must’ve seen different movies by the same name. The movie I saw was full of wonderful women of both races and some really nasty women of one race who were led by the ignorance of the time but also by just plain nastiness of soul. I’m curious what your movie is about…?

      Comment by Lisa Moe Ebbeler — August 21, 2011 @ 7:25 pm | Reply

      • Sorry…meant all of that about reading the book, not watching the movie–just saw the movie yesterday so that’s what is still on my mind…

        Comment by Lisa Moe Ebbeler — August 21, 2011 @ 7:32 pm | Reply

  13. Anytime you have opposite color writing about a specific group of color, this is what happens. This world was made with hatred. Where have you been?

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 17, 2011 @ 6:03 pm | Reply

  14. Every era and time period brings with it examples of heroism and cowardice, repression and liberation, abuse and integrity. It is the dignity with which we carry on with our lives, especially in the face of bigotry and hatred that defines us. Color, religion, accent or being forced to wear a yellow star are all despicable methods of denigration by ignorant and hateful people. Works like “The Help” are important not because they are accurate reflections of the time (for certainly they bring a creative license), but because they bring hatred and bigotry to the surface so that the rest of us can never forget or take our liberties for granted. These creative pieces entertain and yet convey a powerful truth to the public…lest we forget.

    Comment by Ed — August 18, 2011 @ 10:04 am | Reply

    • Thank you Ed! Beautifully said!

      Comment by susanbright — August 18, 2011 @ 11:21 am | Reply

    • I agree with Ed’s comments. As a child of the sixty’s, my mother worked in these homes in the south (NC). While she never outwardly complained about her employer, I know she often felt challenged by the times in which she lived. She encouraged her children to learn from her experience, as way to better themselves through education and hard work. Some of the comments I am finding about this book is petty and inconsiderate. In rural NC, my eight brothers and sisters worked in the fields and factories during the summer to help provide support for the family. We always told each other, that our lives will be so much better than what we are doing right now and it is. My brothers and sisters are well educated and sucessful in their current jobs. We have social workers, health care providers, Military personnels (retired) and our eldest sister has her own business that she worked very hard to build up. So we don’t necessarily look back on the times as a negative, but it shaped us into what we are today. I think the people who are commenting about this book are people who did not grow up in that era and they have no concept of what people went through and their emergence from that experience. As a person who worked in the fields, I really appreciate the fact that I don’t have to do that kind of work again, but I am not ashame of that experience. It help pay for my expenses in colleges and to be honest there was just as many white students that was doing field/house work right along with me. Therefore, I would to be the last person to paint a negative brush to someone writing about the struggle those women had. I have not seen the movie, however I have purchased the book. So to all those naysayers, please find somthing else to write about. I for one wish that people would just keep their opinions to themselves.

      Marie (NC)

      Comment by Marie — August 22, 2011 @ 11:19 am | Reply

  15. Absolutely not! She was not bashing the black community, She was telling of the awful treatment of these women. It was the truth at the time. If there were similarities, so what? Get over it! People just want to make money and anyone can sue for anything! How offensive!

    Comment by Sonia Rumzi — August 18, 2011 @ 5:55 pm | Reply

    • Welcome Sonia! Thank you for your comment! Are you planning to see the movie?

      Comment by susanbright — August 18, 2011 @ 8:49 pm | Reply

  16. Oh, please! The dialect(s) sound accurate to me — I was, and am still, there.

    In reading the book, I saw ‘Aibileen’ (as depicted) to be a strong role model for anyone of any color. Sounds like this lady only wishes to be ‘Aibileen’.

    The Help seemed to me to be a blending of people, places, and times. In my case, if I had ever had the gall to show disrespect for any person of color — and failed to address any one of “them” as Mr., Miss, or Mrs. — I was in deep you know what.

    Get over it and enjoy a good read!

    Comment by Gyps — August 18, 2011 @ 8:03 pm | Reply

    • Hi Gyps. Thank you for your comment. I agee… it was a good read!

      Comment by susanbright — August 18, 2011 @ 8:52 pm | Reply

  17. It is very hard for any one race to walk in anothers shoes, especially when one is being treated as a lower class citizen. I find it hard to believe that the aurthor completely fabricated this entire novel without taking some stories (maybe heard second hand) from african-american women. $75k is a small price to pay to Ms. Cooper if that is what she did. And I also heard that she sent Ms. Cooper a copy of the novel and a note after it was published. WHY? If it had nothing to do with her.

    Comment by Taresa Shannon — August 19, 2011 @ 2:08 pm | Reply

    • Welcome Taresa! You have an excellent point. Why did Stockett feel it was neccessary to give Ms. Cooper a copy of the book before it was published? According to the author the character of Aibileen was based on her family’s maid Demetrie who died in the 1980’s.

      Comment by susanbright — August 19, 2011 @ 3:51 pm | Reply

  18. Susan Bright, just who are you? you seem to have a comment for everybody here? Are you the C.E.O. of this place or what? People who seem to have a comment about everything don’t really know anything…….You hit it on the head Taresa, about walking into others shoes…….peace..p.s. please, no comment Susan,,,,,,

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 19, 2011 @ 4:16 pm | Reply

    • I personally enjoy Susan’s comments. That’s what’s so nice about this blog. And you know what? If you don’t like it you don’t have to read it!

      Comment by Esther — August 19, 2011 @ 6:48 pm | Reply

    • As I read all the comments, yours really draw my attention. I can’t help but detect bitterness in your voice. I can also tell you are a strong, woman with a voice. As an African-American, we don’t like to be stereotyped but we often stereotype others, basing identity on a certain racial, socioeconomic, religious status, etc (ie white people, black people, chineses people, hispanics, etc). Just as we should not be stereotyped, neither should anyone else. And just as we don’t like it, neither does anyone else.

      I love your voice. Never let anyone take that from you. At the same time, use it to build up, not tear down. Use it to encourage. Let go of the anger that prevent your voice and message from being heard in a positive light.

      To think that hatred and racism will be abolished completely is unrealistic. The question then is how and what am I contributing to society to alleviate the problem and/or to make things better? Have I let go of my past experiences that prevent me from moving forward? Am I holding on to something and as a result lashing out at everyone in my path? Somebody did it. Not everybody. An individual did it. Not the entire race.

      Comment by Dee — August 22, 2011 @ 12:18 pm | Reply

  19. Sorry you feel that way Stephanie, this is my blog and I like to acknowledge comments as much as possible!

    Comment by susanbright — August 19, 2011 @ 6:21 pm | Reply

  20. The women I know here in the midwest view these black women as very heroic. We are very sad that they experienced such treatment. I can`t believe so many are so virulent in attacking the author. She had a lot of personal courage in bringing this to the public eye.

    Comment by Judith Kerr — August 19, 2011 @ 7:12 pm | Reply

    • I can`t believe so many are so virulent in attacking the author. She had a lot of personal courage in bringing this to the public eye.
      This subject was brought to the public eye long before Ms. Stockett wrote _The Help_.

      Comment by Joanna — December 10, 2011 @ 2:20 pm | Reply

      • Its not so much attacking the writer of the book,these incidents have been going on since time. and alot of folks just think that by the female who wrote the book brought up something new, she didn’t. Not only that, but she used someone to become famous, and profitng.

        Comment by stephanie — December 10, 2011 @ 6:07 pm | Reply

      • Hi Joanna, Thanks for commenting. As you can see, the book/movie The Help certainly brought out some strong emotions among our bloggers..

        Comment by susanbright — December 10, 2011 @ 6:09 pm | Reply

    • The women of the midwest are indeed bright, then. If they had lived it, as I did (I grew up in a family with a maid) in Ms (90 mi south of Jackson) and as an adult see the cruelty and have never had one; I am a little surprised at the people who “don’t get it” regarding the author. Many here are writers, or, if not writers, readers. Most readers and writers are also thinkers. Most thinkers “get” irony. Does anyone here not see the irony of a southern white woman, in the 21st century, writing a novel based on truth, but getting her info free (slave labor) from a black woman, then making millions of dollars on the black woman’s story (not offering her a dime). Then Stockett took the liberty of penning herself as the heroine open minded “angel” who “exposed the full truth of the cruel south. There is so much irony here, in that, to me, its every bit as cruel as the slavery days of the Civil War and surely a LOT crueler than the days when maids did our dirty work. Does anyone not see the irony and sadness in this? I discovered it about halfway through the book and put it down. I then wrote Amazon and told them why I put it down, and that I planned to send it back for a refund (I could not support that author in any way) and will buy nothing in the future.

      Comment by ricklondonsyndication — December 10, 2011 @ 6:25 pm | Reply

  21. $75,000?? It just hit #1 MOVIE! Bet she is PISSED!!!!

    Comment by rayray — August 21, 2011 @ 8:38 pm | Reply

  22. I am waiting to read the book and/or see the movie. I am not always “ready” when such fictional stories come out, whether written by blacks or whites, but I do think it is time for all of us to try a little harder to get over the past. Not because it’s OK but because there is no direction to move in except forward.

    Comment by Playfair — August 21, 2011 @ 9:29 pm | Reply

  23. I am so tired of the ‘noble negro’ themes that always emerge from films and novels which expore the inhumanity of being Black in an America that produced slavery, segregation, etc.. This attitude of trying to find humanity in the naked reality of white racism from my vantage point only clouds a real discourse and just extends the shelflife of denial, avoidance and racial amnesia…Yet again the victim must find a way to appease the oppressor’s feelings..WTF

    Comment by arandi — August 21, 2011 @ 10:18 pm | Reply

  24. I would NEVER waste my money to see a film like this nor read the book. If the author really wanted to capture the essence of this timeperiod, then she should have researched it accurately. But you know why she didn’t? B/c she ASSUMES/STEREOTYPES us all as speaking improperly & ignorantly. This author’s writing is a waste of time.

    Comment by Eccentrix Breeze — August 21, 2011 @ 10:32 pm | Reply

    • I just have one question. Are all you people that are so upset with the dialect used in this book/
      movie, fans of Tyler Perry’s Madea? Heller? Thank ya Jesus!!!!

      Comment by Martha — September 6, 2011 @ 12:22 pm | Reply

  25. I have not read the book, but i saw the movie today and I loved it! I was moved to tears several times during the movie over the treatment these women endured. I don’t understand how someone of color could object to this book, based on the movie anyway. I think its so important to show this kind of thing so that the truth of how people were treated for their skin color is brought to the surface and we are reminded of how horrible it was/is.

    Comment by Gigi — August 21, 2011 @ 11:21 pm | Reply

  26. I am a black women who grew up in Montgomery County, MS which is two hours north of Jackson, MS. As a child my mother worked for several white families in our small town. On some occassions I would accompany her to work. I can say to my knowledge that I do not recall any of the families treating my Moma the awful way that the maids were treated in the Help. Not to say that it didn’t happen to some but I’m grateful that my Moma was spared and did not edure the ignorance and hatred of some. I’ve seen the Help twice and was drawn to it mainly out of curosity. There are several lessons to be learned by all, some good and some bad. Overall, I feel the movie was done very well and I would recommend that if you go see it, be prepared to feel angry, frustrated, sad and last of all free!

    Comment by Linda — August 22, 2011 @ 12:03 am | Reply

  27. I read the book and found it to be an uplifting story about the maids not in any way disrespectful. It was the white people who were portrayed poorly and not the black ones. Everyone is entitled to their own point of view, but before people comment on the book, I feel they should read it first. And lest we forget, this book is labled as fiction and as such let’s not try to take it too seriously.

    Comment by Julie — August 22, 2011 @ 12:32 am | Reply

  28. I initially found the dialect disconcerting, both demeaning and at times difficult to understand. However, the power of the story took over and I cried as I cheered on the heros:Aibileen, Minny,Skeeter, and all those who had the courage to speak up in a society prevalent with bullies. Social injustice is a crime and all art is a reflection of society.

    Comment by Marushka Waters — August 22, 2011 @ 7:34 am | Reply

  29. I really enjoyed the movie and have watched it twice in one week. I am a woman of color and I feel the film showed the white folks just how much of a contribution the black maids had in raising their children and instilling in them morals, love and value. These are things they take credit for but in essence had nothing to do with even though they brag on their successful children. So, without those atttributes one surely will fail. It must be just as hard for white folks to see themselves in the mirror also, especially the pie scene. I’m sure some of them are really searching the files of their minds wondering if they too were victims. Lol! This movie is what it WAS!!!! Once agan, if the book was based on the maid, just give credit where credit it due and let others enjoy the movie.

    Comment by Steanbo, Rochester, NY — August 22, 2011 @ 8:41 am | Reply

  30. Does Ablene Cooper have a valid case against Katherine Stockett? Lawyers and attorneys will decide. It seems the film’s (I have not read the book) larger issue is what happens among everyday folk when oppression reaches an in intolerable apex as it did in the context of 60s racism. The recent riots in England coinciding with the film’s opening cannot be overlooked and begs the question for how clsoe we might be in moving toward similar protests given the economic and social disparities in our own country.

    Comment by Larry — August 22, 2011 @ 9:11 am | Reply

  31. I read the book and I plan to see the movie. I am a Black Woman and I enjoyed the book. I have heard the same sort of dialect from older and younger people in Louisiana. I see the maids as brave role models for any young black girl. No I don’t want them to grow up to be maids. I want them to learn from this and if they should happen to become a maid, do it well and do it proud. Just because you’re a maid does not mean you are less than any other person in our society. Our youth should appreciate what our people had to endure to make it possible for them to become educated and to grow with better opportunities. I see those maids as heroes. As much as I would like to, I can’t change history. I can only remember and grow from it. In the book, Skeeter shared her profits with every maid that contributed to the book. If Ms. Stockett used information from maids to write about in her book, share the wealth.

    Comment by Iama — August 22, 2011 @ 9:56 am | Reply

    • Yes, I think the whole premise of the book and the movie is to learn and grow from our history. Never forget and learn from it and don’t let it happen again.

      Comment by Erika — August 22, 2011 @ 10:55 am | Reply

  32. I am a white female in south Louisiana and I can tell you that yes……all of my life I have heard black people talk like this and alot of white people too for that matter!!
    What’s the big deal? I read this book and found myself cheering for the maids and wanting to punch the white chics in the lip!
    It’s just a fictional book people.

    Comment by Candy Carlisle Langley — August 22, 2011 @ 10:05 am | Reply

  33. I just saw The Help this past weekend, I am an African American woman the portrayals are what they are, some of the events did happen, the acting in this movie was beautiful. Why are we so afraid of history what happened during civil rights I do not feel degraded or any less of a person by the portrayals in the movie. Women like Minny and Abiliene made the life I lead possible a hard and honest days work is what I saw and love for thier children to have a better life.

    Comment by Bon — August 22, 2011 @ 10:33 am | Reply

  34. I saw the movie and thought it was good. Naming the main character so close to the name of her brother’s servant? Maybe not the best decision. I’m sure becuase of the job description, there will be many similarities that one could assume it refers to them. That being said, we are a nation of negativity. We are quick to be offended and pick up the negative while overlooking the positive. Mrs. Cooper believe she was portrayed in a negative light. However, if this character is indeed based on her, as an African-American woman, I saw her and would see here as a great woman of strength, courage, and integrtiy, one to be emulated and one that any young African-American child could look up to. Perhaps if we TRULY thought more highly of ourselves, we would not be so offended by the perception of others but embrace the beauty, strength and uniqueness we have within knowing we all have a unique contribute and purpose.

    Comment by Dee — August 22, 2011 @ 11:16 am | Reply

  35. Hi there Lisa Ebbeler, The movie that I seen was called The Help. It was based on southern maids in the Mississippi area. I don’t know what your movie was about, nor do I care, but seeing how you want to ask me about what I seen at this movie was white females putting ” colored ” maids down. And to really let you know ( which you probably plan on asking me ) I also read the book. As a matter of fact, I read the book first, then went to the movies? So there you have it, all in a nut shell. Yes the mammy days happened like that, and alot of cases it was worse. I hope that Ms. Cooper gets every other dime from this film, because people need to know that she was Abilene…But you see Ms. Lisa, Alor of folks in Misssissippi is upset about this because a white woman has made millions off of a black woman, and thats the upseting issue going on in Vicksburg Mississippi. Now I know some here thinks no big deal, but to alot, these here movie/book is to them….
    Now today I plan on watching that Ape movie, and I am pretty sure there will be some mis-treatment of animals there huh?

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 22, 2011 @ 11:29 am | Reply

  36. I saw the movie twice. It was hard to watch but a beautiful story to me. My growing up has been in the Midwest part of the US. Minnesota to be exact. While I had many mixed emotions about the film. It was a true story. To be honest I feel more could have been showed. In the day of Medger Evers, racisim was strong every where. Just shown in different ways. There were many terrible things that happened in that era. Thank you Ms. Stockett for taking a very difficult story for some of us and giving a lesson to all of us. I’m a 58 year old African American woman

    Comment by Deborah Woody — August 22, 2011 @ 11:40 am | Reply

  37. After reading some of the comments concerning the movie “The Help”, I felt compelled to give my own. I have seen the movie twice since it debuted and felt the strength of the characters portrayed. I didn’t see my sisters as weak but as rather strong individuals trying to first stay alive during an era when killing blacks was a sport and secondly maintain their dignity and decorum and earn a wage in one of the few professions we were allowed to par- ticipate in. I respected her simple portrayal of the characters honestly through her eyes. She didn’t appear to sugar coat the incidents portrayed at all in my estimation but rather seemingly allowing them to develop as they might have done actually. Degrading yes in some respects but a learning tool for sure for all cultures that view it fictional or not. We need to see with eyes wide open and not eyes wide shut.

    Comment by Sandra K. Clark — August 22, 2011 @ 11:44 am | Reply

  38. What seems to be missing from this conversation is the fact that “women of color” are still caring for children from white families today and being mistreated, these women are now called….. Nannies! These women are from places all over the world and not just African American women, but they are predominately women of color (Mexican, Peruvian, Phillipino, West Indian, etc.)

    Comment by ST — August 22, 2011 @ 11:47 am | Reply

  39. I,m a white american woman born on a poor farm in Alabama, never knew anyone with maids, till i went to college, but i read the book and saw the movies, I,m proud to these black women and how they are portrayed, i know this is how the 60’s were, when i was young and went to birmingham i saw separate signs for ” colors ” these women stood up for themselves, as should have been done, i,m ashamed myself that white people acted like that, we are the ones that look bad in this movie, not the African americans , and at the theater everyone was cheering and clapping for minnie the hero, and it was full of white women, as for the law suit, ms cooper is the brothers maid, her and the author may not really know each other, the author lives in new york and they live in Mississippi,

    Comment by carol — August 22, 2011 @ 11:59 am | Reply

  40. This is where we came from these were the times. I read the book and and saw the movie-fantastic!
    The book and the movie – are windows into a space and time highlighting emotions and feelings that can be identified by all people – they evoke thought necessary for self development.
    The kind of conversation evoked, contributed to by all types of people, show how far we have come that people, (without colour race or class definition) can appreciate a work such as this. Yet it shows how far we have to go when its message and deeper meanings can still be applied to our lives.
    Slavery and the human suffering and degredation it produced experienced by ALL (the oppressed and the oppressors) no matter how long ago will continue to have an effect on our lives, and we should never be asked to forget it.
    The book is an admitted fiction yet somewhere its potency evokes a memory and stirs an old feeling for ANYONE who can understand human suffering, as it should. It opens “stories” to real life identification.
    Personally if the telling of Ablene’s stories influenced kathryn’s inspiration and provokes her research and passion and stirs her to write a whole book of fiction are we really saying that this should compel kathryn to pay her $75,000.00? Well what of Demetrie’s family, they do not want money too? where does it end?

    Comment by Gillian — August 22, 2011 @ 12:13 pm | Reply

    • I have read the book and I think it is wonderful. I could not put the book down at night. I would read through the night and into the following morning because I was so drawn to the story. It has been a long time since a story has drawn me in and kept me glued to the pages. The characters are so real and full of life you feel their pain and their joy. When Minny tells Miss Celia off and then worries all weekend whether or not she will have a job or not you know she had no other choice but to do what she did because that is who she is. All of these characters are true to who they are and that is why the book is such a sensation and so is the movie. People love books and movies with strong characters no matter what color they are. I am young still only in my forties so I lived my childhood just after the civil rights but I have studied it in school and I know what people went through in the South. I find the women to be inspirational in the book. We don’t know how hard it would be to stand up and tell your story during a time when others are getting their tongs removed for talking to Washington, but they did because they knew if they did not then who would. It only shows more of their moral fortitude. Skeeter’s character in the book is not supposed to be a representation of the author. She has stated that all of the characters are fiction and that she only met her brother’s maid once or twice so it would be very difficult to base an entire character on someone you only met twice. Especially one who was as important as Aibileen.

      Comment by Marykay Perez — August 22, 2011 @ 2:12 pm | Reply

  41. I have not read the book or seen the movie. I am a woman of color and what to talk about the roach comment. If anyone has taken classes in African American history then you would know that the thoughts of African Americans were the reflection of society. We were taught that black was ugly. So the reference to the roach isn’t out of context. Read the book bluest eye or Brownstones. As far as the dialect not being quite right, does it really matter. The book is fiction. My sister and I have been researching black dialect for a book we want to write and its not simple enough to say consult a professional. Like I said I haven’t read the book so I don’t know how off the dialect really is.

    Comment by Sheila — August 22, 2011 @ 12:22 pm | Reply

  42. wow Dee, I place myself on the highest steps, so i don;t quite understabd what you mean by ” Truly thought more highly of ourselves” hummmm..interesting that you would think this…the key word is YOU !

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 22, 2011 @ 12:31 pm | Reply

  43. So sorry to tell you this Ms. Dee, but I’m not African-American,,So you can change that post…!

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 22, 2011 @ 12:34 pm | Reply

    • Yes, I thought you were Arfican-American because I thought I read it in one of your comments. My mistake. I’m sorry. And I am TRULY proud of who I am. Not just because I’m proud to be an African-American woman but also because I know who I am as a child of God. The messages hold true for anyone no matter what color. I hear so many African-Americans downing themselves or saying what white people did. I just wish they saw themselves in a different, more positive light and didn’t feel they need to define themselves based on what people say.

      Today suing seems to be the answer. Because they know each other, maybe Mrs. Cooper and the author talked. Maybe not. If they did, maybe suing was unavoidable. If they didn’t, maybe they should have. I just don’t think suing is the answer.

      Comment by dee — August 22, 2011 @ 5:57 pm | Reply

  44. Thank you ST for pointing that out. Yes there are alot of them STILL out there….

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 22, 2011 @ 12:42 pm | Reply

  45. I didnt see the film. I dont plan to see this trash. its the year 2011, and someone out there feels that this was a film worth making (thats alarming)???. I love how everyone keeps commenting on how “beautiful of a story” this is; why is it beautiful? is it because it uses the cliche ‘gentle white woman who takes interest in a less fortunate minority ‘archetype? i people its time to move away from this crap we’ve come too far to still accept this. Its also an added bonus that the black maids look like mammy charicatures (dark skin, fat, unattractive, and doubty) which was RARELY the case during the 60’s oreven during the time the stereotype was created. (the charicature was used as more or less propaganda so that the obvious sexual abuse that female slaves indured would be downplayed by ‘showing that they arent worthy of sexual desire’)

    Comment by iinjol — August 22, 2011 @ 2:11 pm | Reply

  46. Thank You so much iinjol for that somment. I am totally understanding what you said. In any of my comments did i say the story was beautiful. Now I read the book last year, and seen the movie the first week it came out. I for one think that the writer made money off of someone that worked for her family. If it wasn’t true, then the 75K wouldn’t have been paid out. But needless to say, it was a good book, and an okay movie, but willnot see it again.

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 22, 2011 @ 2:25 pm | Reply

  47. and for all the black people on this page calling this film a learning tool–do you really need this movie to teach you about your history? you dont think a BOOK ,a CLASS or even talking to an older relative would be a better tool???

    Comment by iinjol — August 22, 2011 @ 2:25 pm | Reply

    • I just wanted to ask you, where were you born and raised? Unfortunately for us baby boomers and older elders there was A DISTINCT difference in how we were raised and how white people even acted North verses the South. The movie showed me somethjing I wasn’t aware of. Even in my own family, I don’t know of any of the women being maids.

      Reality is your experience. A black person is as different as our parts of the country. I don’t know any maids, no stories or do I know any families that were connected to this service from that era. The “Help” was an insight for a lot of midwestern black females who did not have the expsoure to many experiences that a lot of southeren blacks have. We all learn from what we can.

      Comment by Deborah Woody — September 7, 2011 @ 3:54 pm | Reply

  48. WOW…iinjol, you go girl,,,,Tell us how you really feel ( smile ) yes i talk to older folks, but I was raised in the 50’s so i caught alot of slack…But yes, YES, YES,,people really need to talk to the elders..This book/movie taught me nothing, but I went to see it because I wanted to…Nicely put iinjol….Thank you!

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 22, 2011 @ 2:32 pm | Reply

  49. That woman who’s suing wants the MONEY. Otherwise, she would see that the book was written to HELP people UNDERSTAND what went on during that era. Many people have the same name, no matter how it’s spelled. And, it’s just a book, not a legal document. The book opens one’s eyes to the hurts and wounds that occurred. Also!, has anyone thought of this?…it presents an opportunity for forgiveness. FOR-GIVE-NESS. Gosh, y’all, I think that the Lord has provided this open door. Forgive. Accept. Receive. LEARN. If you have to forgive again, that’s ok; do it. It takes time to heal. And, each person has different time tables. There’s beauty in all of God’s creation. And, there’s a PEACE in forgiveness. Blacks and whites have to forgive EACH OTHER. BOTH sides. Drop the wrong attitudes, drop the wrong motives. If ANY groups have been persecuted, it’s the Jews and the Christians. Mississippi is a lovely state. It’s full of beautiful people, black and white. Yes, wrong things were committed by whites. Are the blacks completely sinless, though? Where is GOD’s love? His healing? His forgiveness? Do we demonstrate *Christ-like* characteristics? I don’t always, but I do always AIM for such. Enjoy the book! Enjoy fiction. Learn, yes, from it. Learn from the heritage and history of ALL people-groups. Remember, also, what the Jews and Christians have ENDURED. Israel needs our help and attention at this very time. The United States needs to serve God. Drop the prejudice. There’s no time for such waste. But!, there IS time for information. Learn all that you can…and DECIDE to, CHOOSE to forgive, laugh, love, understand…and move on. Forgiveness opens doors. Praying for others – regardless of your like or dislike – is also a requirement. And, for us Christians, we know that PRAISE helps to move us forward QUICKER. Don’t go for the money. Don’t go for the fame. Don’t try to start something. If you’re that mad at somebody, ask yourself if YOU would want to be sued. Come on. Grow!

    Comment by k scarlett — August 22, 2011 @ 4:27 pm | Reply

  50. Ms. Dee, I will take your apology with kindness, I am a woman of color, which means I have many in me..many…
    Sometimes in life one must do something to get ones attention, and by the law suit that Ms. Cooper has going, I think that was and still is the best think for her. Don’t forget that ” Roots ” (Alex Haley ) had a few law suits after him when that movie came out as well.

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 22, 2011 @ 6:24 pm | Reply

    • Thank you Stephanie.

      Comment by Dee — August 24, 2011 @ 3:33 am | Reply

    • So sorry to tell you this Ms. Dee, but I’m not African-American,,So you can change that post…!

      Comment by stephanie mims — August 22, 2011 @ 12:34 pm | Reply

      Totally confused now girl, are you of African descent or just prefer to be called a woman of color or what? And for someone who fired a missile at the host of this blog about responding to everyone you sure do seem quite responsive , albeit negatively, yourself to everyone else’s post. Look up the definition of hypocrite, it crosses all racial boundaries. Have a great day and turn that frown upside down, by golly gee. (sarc)

      Comment by John — August 29, 2011 @ 2:10 pm | Reply

  51. Frankly, I don’t see why any of us believe we can comment on whether Ablene Cooper had a right to sue Kathryn Stockett or not. We don’t know anything personal about these two women. We don’t know if Cooper’s complaint has any grounds or not. But instead of admitting this, many of us are making comments as if we know the real circumstances or reasons behind the lawsuit. People can be very arrogant.

    Comment by ladylavinia1932 — August 22, 2011 @ 6:29 pm | Reply

  52. Sorry Ladylavinia, but our family does know Ms. Cooper. My mother in law went to school with her. So Yes my dear, we know her….

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 22, 2011 @ 7:44 pm | Reply

  53. You know, I have been a follower of this blog from the very beginning. It’s a great blog – geared toward people who love to read. I love to read the book reviews, the articles about authors and issues relating to books. So when did it become a political forum? I’m all for a good discussion about books, but some of the comments have been bordering on nasty! I feel like a great blog has been hijacked by people who just want to rant. Please, let’s get back to what makes this blog truly interesting: books!

    Comment by Esther — August 23, 2011 @ 5:39 pm | Reply

  54. People, let me say this, I liked the book, liked the movie, nothing I couldn’t get by sitting with a madear and get the scoop. However, I don’t feel that this blog is being nasty at all. Everyone is different and expresses themselves differenly. When folks voice their opinion, and someone doesn’t like it, then it becomes an attitude, when people speak whats on their mind, then it becomes ” nasty “.I like what people have to say about this movie/book. Mississippi is a beautiful state, but it also is the highlight of recent news. People are coming up dead because of their ” color “. Here it is 2011, soon to be 2012, and still
    ” colored ” folks cannot walk the streets safe without being killed because they are ” colored “..Can we all just watch GLORY and get along??????

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 23, 2011 @ 6:36 pm | Reply

  55. I think that The Help is a great movie just as the movie For Colored Girls because it is not just a movie for Black women but a movie for all races.
    To iinjol i dont know what would make you think that the new generation dont ask their elders about what happened back in the days because they do for how else would they learn about their family history, they sure dont teach these things in school. like i said before this movie is not to teach the ones whom already know about history but to teach those whom know nothing about this time in life. Yes this is a new century and way of living but some people still live in the past and are bringing up there kids the same way.
    As for the woman who is suing i guess she has the right to sue but if she sues then every woman who has lived this way has the right to sue. There are many woman in the past whom have went through life doing the same thing.

    Comment by daisyni — August 25, 2011 @ 9:59 pm | Reply

    • Daisynu, Thank you for your insightful comment.

      Comment by susanbright — August 25, 2011 @ 11:11 pm | Reply

  56. I saw this movie two days ago and thought it was awesome ! It was funny, sad but mostly informative. Maybe things didn’t happen exactly as the movie portrayed but it got me thinking about that time era ! I am a middle aged white woman from the North. I was born in the mid sixties and from where I grew up you never heard or learned of this lifestyle. So i am just happy that I could learn another piece of history.

    Comment by Charlene — August 26, 2011 @ 10:43 pm | Reply

    • Hi Charlene! I think I have learned more about history from the books I have read and the movies I have watched than I ever did in school.Thanks for blogging with us.

      Comment by susanbright — August 27, 2011 @ 2:16 pm | Reply

  57. Ron, its all about the money man, all about the money…..If I could re-make Roots, I would be rolling in the $….

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 29, 2011 @ 12:36 pm | Reply

  58. Gee John, why call me a girl? I have a name, just like you. Probably older than you by the way you responded. I will answer your question about african descent. I believe if you know your history, ALL folks are from african descent. So don’t get scared now..haha,,,anyways, John you know my name, and i don’t need to look up any word in the dictionary, and as far as my frown? hummm don’t have one, sorry to bust your bubble…I won’t respond to your comments so have a great day….Good-Bye…

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 29, 2011 @ 5:46 pm | Reply

  59. The book was great; and, I’ve heard the movie is even better. But all are missing the point. Ms. Stockett tries a literary form of “modern day emancipation” via “The Help” by exposing
    the “evil white women and men” vs the subservient black maids of the 1960s south. Ms. Stockett was right. I grew up white in Ms and it was a terrible time marked with racism, prejudice, and very unequal rights. The
    REAL story here is not any of that (which was important), but the fact that Ms. Cooper aka the maid, told the whole story and was not paid a penny (nor was anyone else). Ms Stockett claims
    she paid them something (but can’t seem to find the cancelled checks or receipts). Uh, yeah. So what Ms. Stockett did was much worse (if that can be possible), than what my fellow whites did during the virulent 1960s of Ms.
    She took us all the back to the 1860s of slavery, by having an African American write her book, and get paid nothing. Work with no pay is called slavery. Thanks so much Ms. Stockett for
    taking my beautiful state, that worked so hard to work its way out of the horrible muck of bigotry and oppression, and right back into the Civil War days of slavery. The book was wonderful
    btw. Right message, wrong messenger. Talk about irony. Sincerely,

    Comment by Rick London — August 31, 2011 @ 10:16 am | Reply

    • Rick, Thank you for your very thought provoking comment. This is the first time I heard anything about Kathryn Stockett claiming to have paid Ms. Cooper and misplacing the checks and or receipts. Obviously there is a lot more going on with this case than I am aware of. I finally saw the movie and thought that it was very well done, although extremely upsetting.

      Comment by susanbright — August 31, 2011 @ 2:38 pm | Reply

      • Susan, The “missing checks et al” could be heresay; it is only something I read; but we do know there has been no proof of payment; and, according to the NY School Of Law, it will be retried, thank goodness as “The Help” as important as the message was it presented, was slicker than anything Jim Crow could have pulled off. Ms. Stockett is a very successful snake-oil saleswoman (her own brother is not talking to her; turns out he never built a separate restroom for his maid, but she decided to make him evil (because it was only “fiction”); one might say, “Because its fiction, one can say what one wants by changing the names”. Not so. There’s already been numerous prescedented cases in which the characters being depicted won and the author lost. Snake oil salesperson/authors come on all races colors and religions. If you’ve not read of Alex Haley losing his plagiarism case $650,000 which would be about 4-5 million today…you guessed it; not only did he not write the majority of “Roots” he did none of the research. The case was awarded to a whiite author who DID write and research it. But it was kept low key and didn’t really come out until after Haley died (much about it in Haley’s Wiki page) and many other legal pages on the web. So Stockett is not the first and won’t be the last to “hire slaves” to write their stories to make them rich and famous.

        Comment by Rick London — September 2, 2011 @ 4:38 pm | Reply

  60. oops, boy Rick, you hit the nail really well. And racism is still alive and kicking in Mississippi.
    Ms. Kathryn got over on the book and the movie, You couldn’t have said it any better. Mississippi is beautiful state, my husband is from Vicksburg, but I couldn’t live there, too much hatred over color. I knew it was bad, but wow, in Vicksburg, and Jackson is
    way backwards.

    Comment by stephanie mims — August 31, 2011 @ 11:24 am | Reply

  61. The problem with a movie like this is that it gives the impression that all white people treated blacks in this manner. My parents who grew up in the 1940’s and 1950’s in eastern North Carolina both had maids in their homes from the time they were born until the time they got married. They saw the movie and said they couldn’t relate to it because they never treated their “help” like the movie portrays and didn’t know anyone who did. Mom was raised in a small town and Dad on a farm. Both said the maids were like family members. They ate with them, used the same bathrooms, ( dad didn’t have indoor plumbing until he was in the eighth grade), and also went on trips with them to the beach and mountains. My father talked to his cousin who grew up in Mississippi and she said her “help” wasn’t treated in this way and she didn’t know anyone who treated their “help” that way. I am not saying it didn’t happen I am sure it did just wasn’t the norm. Also I grew up in North Carolina in the 1970’s and we had two maids. First, Mary then Naomi. I loved them and they loved me. I told them until they died that they were my black mothers and they would say that I was their white child. Thank you for reading.

    Comment by Chris Matthews — September 2, 2011 @ 3:34 pm | Reply

    • Hi Chris. Thank you for your uplifting comment.. I would like to believe that the way ” the help” was treated in the movie was not the norm.

      Comment by susanbright — September 2, 2011 @ 3:58 pm | Reply

  62. Chris, Though I commend your parents for their goodwill; my parents were similar. My dad purchased our first maid’s home for her outright and put her son through college. He became the first local African American NBC anchor. The “word on the street” was “Boy that family sure knows how to treat people right”. But did we? Just because we treated them better than many others, did that make it right. Of course not. That whole “maid/servant system” was “What was salvaged from the days of slavery”; Maids had no union, so they took the wages they were paid, usually low. My dad had money so he knew by buying her homes, cars, kids education etc she’d stay with us. The thought never occurred to her that SHE COULD HAVE GOTTEN HER OWN EDUCATION because it wasn’t legal to do so at the time. So saying we treated our maid better than a neighbor, was akin to saying “We treated our slaves better than the Jones’. There should NEVER have been a master/maid system in the first place. Why did it have to take the 1964 Civil Rights Act to put an end to it all? Because it had to, as it was too close to slavery and WE, the southerners who “treated our maids so well” were a part of it. Even if Ms. Stockett had done the right thing, and paid Aibileen the proper royalties, even Ms. Stockett misses the point. She makes herself out to be “the great emancipator” but in reality she was only less viscious in an evil system that should not have been there in the first place. Little did we know when we were reading the book; that she had stolen it from Aibleen Cooper (the maid’s real name); making her a slave of the most brutal kind. I am so disappointed and stopped reading the book at page 115, called Amazon and told them why I was sending it back (talked to a supervisor telling them “I’m sorry. I grew up in Ms in the 60s and I cannot support modern day slavery of any kind”. The supervisor seemed very aware of the controversy and wrongdoing of Ms Stockett and immediately issued a refund. Of course my wife and I will not be seeing her movie and we will use social media to let people know this kind of slick slavery that Ms Stockett implemented is just as evil as the slavery of the Confederacy (if not more so).

    Comment by Rick London — September 2, 2011 @ 4:54 pm | Reply

    • Rick- thank you for your reply. My comment was not meant to debate whether having a maid was right or wrong. I only meant to convey the fact that our “help” was treated with respect and kindness unlike what is shown in the movie. Unlike your family my family was not wealthy and ours truly needed the extra help not because it was the trendy thing to do. I can tell you they were very appreciative of our maid’s work and the maid seemed very happy to have a job. As far as the 1964 Civil Rights Act is concerned I fail to see how that has anything to do with having a maid or not. Like I said, we had a maid when I was growing up in the 1970’s and 1980’s and some of the families I knew growing up still have the same maids working for them from over thirty years ago. While many of these ladies are up in years now and certainly didn’t have the opportunity to better themselves through education that is certainly not the case now. I know of young black women working in white folks homes now. I guess in the type of society we live in there will always be the rich and the poor. It’s unfortunate but the way it is. Thanks

      Comment by Chris — September 2, 2011 @ 6:44 pm | Reply

  63. While I commented earlier about the book and the movie, Rick’s comment has inspired me to say this. If anyone really believes that Ms. Stockett’s book/movie and your personal experience as a white person treating your maid good was the norm, You are seeing what you want to see and it is a very narrow view. in my view. I think the book/movie depicted the tip of the ice berg. This is during the times black men were being hung for the fun of it and black women were raped, including the Help.

    I grew up in the north and I didn’t understand racism as a child but in the 50’s 60’s 70’s and 80’s (even now) it is always a hard job to be african american in most communities. Living in Minnesota things are done more strategically and it’s a behind your back type of racisim. In the south it has and still is to some degree in your face and we will never be anything but a “nigger” to a lot of white people in this country. I always find it interesting when we as a human race can’t tell the truth about what happened, and what continues to happen.

    The few of you that treated your help “nice” you should have, they were/are human beings!! To stand up and say “But we treated them well” is an insult to me really. As a women of color I was very iggnorant to what has happened over the last 300 years to my people. I now have learned and continue to learn. I must stand and say, if you want to know what it really was like, and continues to be like, read the facts. Talk to the living proof. I can’t imagine anyone wanting to be anyone’s help. It was all that we were allowed to do.

    Being a maid was not the desired occupation back then, the maids and everyone else who was African American wanted an education but it was refused to them. In my opinon the movie was great piece of the little humanity that was shown…to me as a northerner…my counterparts born and raised in the south or other part of the countries see this movie through the eyes of their experience see this much differently. This book/movie has started a debate and point of views being posted with everyones opinon. This book/movie for us is a tiny peek into our history that is one of the most tragic times of our lives. This country and others is not based on the class system of rich and poor only, it was system was primarily created to keep black people in their place, then the other parts came in to play like financial differencs etc. To be more acurate it started as the color cast system. If more people knew the real history and not your small piece of it , I think you may think differently.

    Please don’t misunderstand, I certanily am not trying to put down anyones point of few, however it is difficult to read some of these comments that appear to think that the very few families that had maids and treated them well is representative of the way of life back then is not looking outside of their own small world. Again I say, how else should have someone been treated.

    People read the history, dig deep and really learn what happened in that era. That way when someone comes back with a strong comment, you will understand why. Thanks Rick

    Comment by Deborah Woody — September 3, 2011 @ 10:44 am | Reply

  64. Thank you for your insightful comment Deborah and I can only imagine what it was like. I feel confident, if I’d never left the south (I did end up getting educated and worked in the Northeast) where thankfully, I learned of cultures other than my own; and that is the only reason I’m able to clearly see this. I by no means am any brighter. Chris, I have to call you on this again. Yes, it was good to treat “the help” with a certain sense of dignity. But don’t you think if our parents REALLY cared they would have cleaned their own houses, raised us as parents instead of a surrogate African American woman (whom they’d just met…my new mommy)….and she “was family” as the cliche’ goes; treated the best in town. But that’s how WE felt. We never stopped to ask her (the help) how SHE felt. Of course she was grateful to get a home and her son’s education. But only 3 years later LBJ’s Civil Right’s Act Of 1964 passed and the whole subservient master/maid system was virtually demolished; yes there was some remnants of it and still are; but it was no longer “the norm”; again thank goodness; Most of the African Americans (even in their 50s and 60s were able to get grants and/or scholarships, go to college and become the professionals we had the opportunity to become…which should have happened in the first place. As an adult; I’ve never used a maid; I have used several maid services once a month who had union wages; were of all ethnic origin and that was fine. But don’t you think if our parents had TRULY cared for “The Help” they would have never hired them in the first place, but found a way to put them through college and get jobs like we did; so they wouldn’t have to be “The Help”? Trust me, I don’t don’t want to talk negatively about my beloved (now late) parents. But I have to face reality. My maid did not want to be a maid (no matter how well she was treated). Nor did yours. Ms Stockett, as fine a writer as she may be (or transcriber; Aibleen actually is the author) misses the whole point. No matter how well “the help was treated” they were abused, simply by being in the system of master/servant. When asked, you’ll not find one little African American girl “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Her answer won’t be “A maid of a white family that treats me like I’m one of their own family members”. Get it?

    Comment by Rick London — September 3, 2011 @ 11:14 am | Reply

  65. PS Deborah; BTW I’m back in the south Arkansas (which really is “partial south” in that we are the only blue state in the south; and most tend to be a bit progressive; still a lot of work to do tho……but have been back home to Mississippi several times. The new type of racism/bigotry throughout the south through which I’ve traveled is VERY covert and subtle; mostly financial with African Americans, gays, Jews, Mexicans and any other scapegoat they can find left to fall through the cracks; then blamed for “wrongdoings”. It’s insidious, and in many ways much more harmful than the old covert KKK’s modus operandi.

    Comment by Rick London — September 3, 2011 @ 11:22 am | Reply

  66. Thanks Rick. I’m glad to hear that there is some progress. I agree with your last statement of the racisim being ininsidious. It is true that the situation is worse in many ways.

    It breaks my heart to know that in the 20th century, a black man can be tied to a rope , the rope tied to the end of a truck, and he is drug around, while in the same breath there can be a black CEO of a fortune 500 company. Go figure?

    President Obama’s election has proven to be another inside look to what this country is about. While it is an unbelieveable achivement for us as amercians, our President is still considered a nigger. I hate that word but I’ve seen clearly that this is the mindset of today still.

    Even within the government he runs, he is treated like a second class citizen. It is natural the fights between the parties, however because he is who he is, the normal criticism has raised to a new level . A level that shows racisim is alive and well. I’m ashamed of my country as to the treatment of the President .People are very vocal and it’s clear racisim is part of the pie of not supporting what he has done as President.

    If nothing else, this movie has created an opportunity for dialouge and hopefully insight into what the real world was and is.

    Rick, I would like to say to you, thank you for your honest opinion and speaking the truth from a white man’s perspective. You are rare and I hope you will always say what you know and beleive when it comes to this very very difficult subject. I’m going to stop because I could go on and on.

    Is this 2011??? God Bless You

    Comment by Deborah Woody — September 3, 2011 @ 12:15 pm | Reply

    • I do not believe that the majority of people look at President Obama as the “N” word. I am proud to have an African American president. Yes, there are many people who do not like him or what he is doing, but I do not think that it is all about race. It seems the norn today to bash sitting Presidents. I thought that this was a book club blog. Why not talk books for a change.

      Comment by Marty — September 3, 2011 @ 5:24 pm | Reply

      • Welcome Marty! Yes, let’s talk books for a change. The intent of this blog is that of a fun and intellectual exchange of information about books. Do you have a book recommndation for us? We are meeting next week to choose our next book and would love some ideas!

        Comment by susanbright — September 3, 2011 @ 5:36 pm | Reply

  67. All I can say is ” WOW ” ….Deborah, Deborah,Deborah…..Yeah, its a shame how the president is still considered as the ” N ” word, and yet folks seem to forget what his mother is. We all know that a spit of ” Black blood ” in your system, your automatically black. That part is ” unbelieveable ” …..but we all know who makes up the rules in america…..All ” Colored ” people have something else in them besides ” Africian “.

    Comment by stephanie mims — September 3, 2011 @ 4:15 pm | Reply

  68. I’m not sure what the last post meant (by Stephanie) but since it sounded a bit “conspiracy theory template” I’ll ignore it and move on to important matters. As I said I am in Arkansas (a blue state that brought us President Clinton, the ONLY President to A. Balance Our Budget and B. Keep the Citizens Safe (during two terms) in my lifetime. Do you realize those two elements are the main “job description” of a President? Most don’t; not even if they are running; and apparently lately ESPECIALLY if they are running. I look at President Obama as I did Clinton and any other President. First you have to understand what a President is, and isn’t. A president is NOT our moral leader. In fact when they start talking morals “run for the hills” as our founding fathers did from England. President Obama has done a lot of good and some things I may have done differently. But I find him to be a hard worker, with very little if any cooperation from (A Republican Run Congress) and before you call me a flaming liberal; I am a middle of the road conservative who has voted Republican as often as Democrat. And I would NEVER EVER vote Tea Party so don’t get me started. Another topic, another day. No matter how much a reader may like about them, can you imagine any of them knowing the job description of a U.S. President. A President works for us. He/she is our public servant. A president is a glorified “policy wonk”. Congress has MUCH more power than a President; so when you see things going wrong, look more towards Congress (it is Republican run by the way); so if you “hate” Obama; chances are your hate is misdirected; it is the stagnant behavior of Congress; who, in many cases DOES consider him “the N Word” and will not cooperate. Hate to say that in this day and age. It is true. I covered The HIll for the media for two decades. My uncle was a 2 term Republican Congressman. I know how things work fairly well there. What is happening is NOT Obama’s fault. Bush did a dismal job. Did not keep us safe. Did not even come close to balancing the budget. He handed Obama a budget that Einstein couldn’t have understood. He did not keep citizens safe. 9/11 happened under his watch even after Clinton gave him all the warnings (which he ignored). Bin Laden attacked us; Bush took a war to Iraq/???????? Uh..Ok. On the other hand Obama got rid of Al Queda’s spiritual leader Bin Laden, got us out of Iraq, and is making plans to remove us from Afghanistan. Is President Obama perfect. No far from it, and I’ve written him at times when I was in disagreement. An enemy of America? You’ve got to be kidding. He was bin Laden’s worse nightmare. The Tea Party was (indirectly) Bin Laden’s creation. He’s still “winning” while dead. Read his manifestos. “I know I can’t defeat America with box cutters…but its a start. It will begin the financial bankruptcy. (He saw clearly our achilles heel); then they will implode from within; the rich will turn against the poor, and be bigger enemies against each other and forget about Al Queida. If you can’t see his dream coming true through the Tea Party, you’re living on another planet. Wish I was wrong. The majority of my childhood friends have been brainwashed. But some of us know the real story and that is just the type division in America Bin Laden prayed for…and apparently is getting. Who do you think can do you more harm; your neighbor or boss in an opposite political party or some Al Queida member in Somalia? I rest my case. Every time someone calls President Obama “The N Word” or disrespects him when he’s trying; they are merely being a puppet of Bin Laden long after he’s dead. That is so sad to me because I figured Americans to be so much smarter than that. By the way, I am not a big President Obama fan but his race has nothing to do with it. I feel he is “learning on the job” but has surprised me numerous times by “getting it right”. Congress on the other hand has been Bin Laden’s best friend by showing him total disrespect. If they’d only go back and read Bin Laden’s manifestos, they’d think twice about destroying America from within.

    Comment by Rick London — September 3, 2011 @ 5:55 pm | Reply

    • Hi Rick,
      Same message goes to you. While I appreciate your passion, can we just talk books for a while?

      Comment by susanbright — September 3, 2011 @ 6:45 pm | Reply

  69. Susan, I’m not trying to pick a fight here, but alot of whats gonig on with ou rpresident has to do with race. You see, everytime Obama does something, he gets thrown up under the bus, talked about and this ” birth certificate” lets not forget that one. How many times or what other person that was a president had to show proof? Its easy for you to say this because your on the other side of the fence looking in, Colored folks are in the fence area…Now i know that this is a book talk, and I will keep it that way, but it just erkes me when a non-colored talkes about how its not a ” race thing”..Racism is new and inproved in 2011.
    I am done, nope, not upset, just puzzled about some of the things that non-colored say. and I will say Peace and harmony to all..
    now lets get back to ” The Help ” and all the people who are upset about it…

    Comment by stephanie mims — September 3, 2011 @ 5:56 pm | Reply

  70. Hi Stephanie,
    I am not sure why this comment is directed at me, however, I must say that I am ready to move on. There are many other forums for discussing racism and politics. Let’s all take a break and just talk books for a while!

    Comment by susanbright — September 3, 2011 @ 6:42 pm | Reply

    • I have to say I agree with Susan 100%. Let’s move on. This is a book club blog – not a political forum. I am sure that those of you who feel the need to espouse your beliefs can find other outlets on the Internet. I’m all for talking about books! So ready to leave this topic. It’s boring already.

      Comment by Esther — September 3, 2011 @ 10:19 pm | Reply

  71. Gee Rick, I guess my post was important to you because you read it. I liked your previous posts, but this last one with the tea party and Clinton was way off track buddy…So please donot talk about me and my TEMPLATE.Your and did all these things because why again? Peace out Rick, ..Geeze Lousie,,way off on this opic…LETS TALK ABOUT THE BOOK NOW,,HOWS THAT?And by the way Rick, I voted for Pres Obama, Do I regret it? NOPE….Later my book friend…

    Comment by stephanie mims — September 3, 2011 @ 7:35 pm | Reply

  72. In this particular case, there is a direct connection to the book “The Help” and politics/current events. First, I forgot to answer Deborah’s statement on the current racist murder of the young black man by a group of white thugs in Madison, Ms outside of Jackson last week. Though it sounds jaded I grew up where lynchings, cross burnings, threats (my family received many for being considered “too liberal”), etc. And all that could have only occurred in a climate of racism. And with the Klan pretty much running the state, it was no surprise that we lived through MANY “Miississippi Burnings”; the film was but one. I witnessed more than I care to count. Fast forward 40 years and the innocent black male was run over in cold blood, SIMPLY FOR HIS SKIN COLOR. That kind of crime would rarely if ever occur in a climate of less racial tension. The thugs who did it, not only did it out of hate, but because they figured there was a chance they might get away with it. Enter The Tea Party, nothing more than the klan in business suits and many with degrees. You see, this has been a valuable lesson for me; the racism and hatred does not dissolve with the sheets, it only takes on a new form. And given the very divided nation in which we now live, it would take the slickest of slick Machaevelian authors (Kathryn Stockett) to write a book; transparently make herself a certain character “Skeeter”, and upon further investigation she is Hilly on Steroids. I am so glad the trial is not over; that there will be more. This is not about politics, not about race to me.. Its about The Fair Use Act; a very important portion of the 1st Amendment. Aibleen Cooper’s 1st Amendment rights were breached by Kathryn Stockett. Is it my opinion? Yes but it would have been the same opinion of my great x3 uncle U.S. Supreme Court Judge Benjamin Cardozo; whose writings are considered “The final word” almost 100 years later regarding 1st amendment rights. This case is cut and dry. And I know what Judge Cardozo’s decision would have been. Funny story; I was arguing this case with old childhood friend in Ms on facebook (white upper middle class friends) who also “couldn’t identify with the white characters”, but more importantly, “could not see what Ms. Stockett did wrong”. One told me “She spoke at our church and was very calm and didn’t seem money motivated”. I had to laugh because where I live, Al Capone got his start. He also used to visit various churches, be friendly and generous, and when he announced he was moving to Chicago to start his (bigger empire); they didn’t understand why such a kind, gentle, man who didn’t care much about money would want to do something so silly”. My “friend” then blocked me. 🙂

    Comment by Rick London — September 3, 2011 @ 8:59 pm | Reply

    • Oh come on Rick! I would hardly compare Katheryn Stockett to Al Capone. That’s just ridiculous. I don’t blame your friend for blocking you.

      Comment by Dani — September 4, 2011 @ 4:43 pm | Reply

  73. Stephanie; Everyone’s post here is important to me; whether I agree with it or not…because it is a passionate opinion of a fellow human being and until we can all not only
    accept and tolerate, but accept and CELEBRATE that for the rest of our lives passionate opinions may not always be in agreement with ours; then we really will never “get life, or serenity, or happiness or YOU NAME IT”. Eh?

    Comment by Rick London — September 3, 2011 @ 9:57 pm | Reply

  74. Don’t worry rick you have friends here as long as you read a book.

    Comment by stephanie mims — September 4, 2011 @ 10:20 am | Reply

  75. There is a good book out that everyone is talking about, and its called MUDBOUND…I am going to download it today on my nookcolor…

    Comment by stephanie mims — September 4, 2011 @ 10:39 am | Reply

    • Mudbound is an excellent book!

      Comment by Esther — September 4, 2011 @ 4:36 pm | Reply

  76. To answer your question Martha about Tyler Perry, No, I am no fan of his. I don’t like the talk, the dressing, nor do I like the subjects that his movies are based on(stereotype ) My husband feels that his movies put ” colored men ” down, and makes them less of a man.
    My brother-in-law did not watch The Color Purple for 15 years or so, he didn’t care for the movie.

    Comment by stephanie mims — September 6, 2011 @ 12:55 pm | Reply

  77. Let me apologize to those of you that feel I took the conversation off of the book. I guess my response was to all that I read and my high emotion about everything connected to race. Everyone has an opinon and I stated mine. It was not my intent for the discussion to move away from the book, however, I think my life experiences always pop up for me in dialogue such as this. There is no way what the conversation is not about race. Or the movie for that matter. I used examples of President Obama and the lynchings to say how things appear are not always as they are. Just because we voted in a black president does not mean that a good portion of this country does not see him in some deragatory way.

    Because Ms. Stockett wrote this heart warming story does not over shadow the fact that we were considered the “N” word even though some white families were nicer to us than others.

    The hearbreaking part for me is why why why were and are my people treated this way in the first place?

    In my heart any black experience from being a slave, to being someones maid, to being the alright black person to be around the majority group to who was voted for president is all connected.

    Sorry again for going off track as some of you have said I did, however, whenever a movie, or a series or a book comes out about the black experience it weighs on my heart, because I live it everyday. How many people have to look at who they are everyday of their life.

    Comment by Deborah Woody — September 6, 2011 @ 11:30 pm | Reply

    • Deborah, No need for you to apologize. I hear your passion and pain and have learned a lot from the many comments on this post.

      Comment by susanbright — September 7, 2011 @ 9:29 am | Reply

    • Deborah, I do (to a certain degree) in that I am a miniority in a small southern town. My minority is not noticeable as my skin is white and I don’t have features that might look foreign, but I don’t hide the fact that I am Jewish. That is considered a minority; and, during the 60’s we were targeted in a similar manner (not as brutal) but enough to where I knew I was “different” by the Klan. Reading this book to me after knowing what southern maids experienced, and I do know, is such a PT Barnum con job. I know I sound like broken record but it would be like at the end of the Civil War, if there had been someone in a slaveholder who “knew it was wrong” but went along with the status quo and wrote a book, and in a very transparent way, “Made” herself appear to be the “good witch” aka “Skeeter” but then we find perhaps even while after emancipation she had beaten this (now ex-slave) to get her to talk; so she could write the book, and, leaving the slave with nothing. Is there really a big difference in what Ms. Stockett, now a multi-millionaire who was really a stenographer/secretary who wrote Aibleen Cooper’s story, promised to pay her very well; and didn’t pay her a penny? I am livid. For now, while everyone is ohhing and ahhhing over the book and film, that will overshadow the real story of course (as American loves fame and a good story and a rags to riches author story). But when the dust settles, and people begin to understand that Ms. Stockett not only misled Ms Cooper (by not paying her a penny) but misled us too by making us think she was obviously Skeeter, when in reality she was “Miss Hilly On Steroids”; that, historically will be the real story. And she should get ready for that karma because it’s coming, ready or not.

      Comment by ricklondonsyndication — September 7, 2011 @ 4:12 pm | Reply

  78. Deborah, I understand. And I feel your pain.

    Comment by stephanie mims — September 7, 2011 @ 6:30 am | Reply

  79. Deborah, I enjoyed reading your last post; and, I believe those of us who were born white can only take a long shot guess at what the pain is. But to try to discuss the book “The Help” with using parallels
    and/or analogies would be like discussing Carl Sagan without discussing galaxies. The book itself is an amazing story; sad and painful albeit, but a good one. What happened was it became a much
    bigger story when we found the author to be nothing more than another Jim Crow who acted “the good guy” painted herself as Skeeter, and of course we all know was “Miss Hilly” (if not worse). So this
    is one book in which the real story goes way beyond the book. It is one in which the story of how, why, and who profited from this book is the real story. And it is horrendous. Am so glad it is going
    back to court. Someone, then can write a real one, with integrity of the real south of the 60s. And though much of Ms. Stockett’s is accurate or semi-accurate, I wouldn’t trust the details as far
    as I can throw them, given what she did. Much of what I saw in the south was much worse than what she wrote (some of it not as bad); but such a story needs to be written by an author with
    integrity, not one who exploits and writes (so common these days) but usually by the small dogs. When a big dog like Stockett does it, it raises a lot more eyebrows and makes us look at all
    our issues of race, fair treatment, civil rights, etc. Thanks

    Comment by ricklondonsyndication — September 7, 2011 @ 9:26 am | Reply

  80. I meant “without using parallels”; sorry.

    Comment by ricklondonsyndication — September 7, 2011 @ 9:26 am | Reply

  81. No one has mentioned another prejudice shown in the book and movie, the prejudice against Celie. She was a good woman, but she was an outcast–wasn’t born to the right family. Though most comments have been regarding the primary theme of racial prejudice, there was the obvious class prejudice as well. As a white female raised in the rural South, I saw both kinds of prejudice but understood neither.

    My family was a good, decent familly but definitely not the upper crust. In the small town where we lived, those who lived in my part of town were deemed “Celie”. No matter how we tried to penetrate that glass ceiling placed over our heads, we weren’t allowed to move above our station. Thankfully, my family moved to the city where my previous dwellings were not held against me. It was better, but still there. If you didn’t wear the trendy brand of shoes or clothes (which we couldn’t afford), you were deemed Celie. Entering college in 1968 amidst the quest for equality, my classmates accepted me for who I was, not where I lived or what clothes I wore. Celie, I felt your pain. College, like your Minnie, set me free.

    My grandmother (who lost a lung to TB in the ’30s) had “help” every Monday to do the laundry. Mabel–by her own choice–would not eat at the table with us, nor would she use the inside bathroom (using the outhouse instead). I asked her about it, even invited her to sit at the table with us at meals. She refused saying it wasn’t “right”. Though in the same room with us, just 2 feet away from us, she wouldn’t (or felt she couldn’t) move over to join us at the table. I didn’t get it.

    Every Saturday my grandmother would take me grocery shopping with her in the nearby larger town. The highlight of our trip was to eat lunch at the local drug store. One Saturday, we walked in to see no seating booths nor stools at the lunch counter. When we asked why the seating was removed, the person behind the counter replied that rather than server “N”s, they took out the seating. As a child this made no sense to me. I asked Grandma to explain what happened; she couldn’t. How can you explain prejudice to a child who had not previously been exposed to it?

    I slowly began to realize that color seemed to be the problem, that for some reason darker skin was hated by some. My grandfather worked outdoors as a carpenter and painter. Over the years he had become quite tanned and dark. Once I learned there was a stigma to dark skin, that some people directed hate towards dark skin, I began to worry for my grandfather–afraid that someone would hurt him because of his skin. Surely people could look past the skin color and see what a good man he was, couldn’t they?

    As I grew older I noticed “colored” and “white” water fountains, “colored” and “white” entrances to the same building and wondered about the redundancy and expense involved in duplicating everything. A nearby school district completely closed down rather than integrate believing that separate but equal was okay. The black school was newer and better equipped than the much older white school. I couldn’t figure out why whites were putting up such a ruckus over being sent to a newer school.

    After college I became an educator, working with students and faculty of a variety of races, religions, and ethnic groups. Fortunately, I’ve been able to travel to countries where I didn’t understand or speak the language. Witnessing the inexplicable prejudices growing up and knowing what it is like to feel alone when in a crowd of people who speak differently from me molded my view of my students and what they may be facing as they came into my classroom. Hopefully, I’ve been able to “help” others in their journey toward understanding and acceptance.

    Comment by anne marie — September 11, 2011 @ 10:28 am | Reply

    • Thank you Anne Marie for your response. I too noticed the class discrimination, I was caught up in what affected me personally. Celia was representative of someone who would be killed, because of her association with african americans. There are many stories of whites in general…men and women who like us did not understand or beleive in the sometimes brutal prejudice. Those brave people also died along with others.

      To me, she was and is just as important as any other human being. Harsh treatment and worse was not deserving of those that believed/believe in not seperate, but equal.

      Thanks again

      Debbie Woody

      Comment by Deborah Woody — September 12, 2011 @ 1:54 am | Reply

  82. Anne Marie, Thank you for sharing your thoughts as well as your personal story.My heart broke for Celia Foote. .

    Comment by susanbright — September 11, 2011 @ 11:01 am | Reply

  83. Hey, maybe I’m lost here, but whats the next book we are reading?

    Comment by stephanie mims — September 12, 2011 @ 11:34 am | Reply

    • Hi Stephanie, Our next book is Finding Nouf by Katya Hijazi. Thanks for reminding me that I had better post it. I started the book last night and am finding it really intriguing!

      Comment by susanbright — September 12, 2011 @ 2:41 pm | Reply

    • Stephanie, Glad that you’ll be reading our next book with us! It sounds like a really interesting read.
      Let us know what you think!

      Comment by Esther — September 12, 2011 @ 3:57 pm | Reply

  84. Susan Bight, I looked up this book called Finding Nouf, by Katya Hijazi, but there is no such book by this author,,,I found a book by this name but a different author ( Zoe Ferraris ) Whats up?

    Comment by stephanie mims — September 12, 2011 @ 7:29 pm | Reply

    • Hi Stephanie, I goofed! The author is Zoe Ferraris. I downloaded the book on my Kindle and it said Finding Nouf: A Novel (Katya Hijazi). I wasn’t thinking and copied it. Perhaps that was the original name of the book? In the book Katya Hijazi is the name of the lab worker at the coroner’s office.

      Comment by susanbright — September 12, 2011 @ 8:15 pm | Reply

  85. 0kay so I will download on my nookcolor. It seems interesting. Thanks for the correction. Bye

    Comment by stephanie mims — September 12, 2011 @ 8:28 pm | Reply

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